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Christmas Cookie Recipe: How To Make Macaroon Bars

11/12/2014 12:02 EST | Updated 01/12/2015 05:59 EST
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This Sept. 22, 2014 photo shows macaroon bars in Concord, N.H. When it comes to holiday cookies, everything depends on the recipe and a few simple techniques. (AP Photo/Matthew Mead)
Oh, that classic Almond Joy vs. Mounds dilemma... Whether to go dark chocolate or milk chocolate with nuts. These bar cookies inspired by those sibling candy bars let you have it your way, or both ways.

We created a basic macaroon cookie baked into bar form, then topped it with milk chocolate and almonds or dark chocolate just like the candy that inspired them. But they're your cookies, so you get to break the rules and do dark chocolate and almonds. Or cashews. Or white chocolate and pistachios.

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MACAROON BARS

Start to finish: 45 minutes

Servings: 24

14 ounces sweetened shredded coconut

2/3 cup sugar

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

4 egg whites

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 cup milk or dark chocolate bits

Whole toasted almonds (optional)

Heat the oven to 350 F. Coat a 9-by-9-inch baking pan with cooking spray.

In a medium bowl, combine the coconut, sugar, flour and salt, breaking up any clumps of coconut. Add the egg whites and vanilla, then mix until thoroughly combined. Press into the prepared pan and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until set up and light golden brown. Allow to cool.

Place the chocolate bits in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave on high in 15 second intervals, stirring in between, until melted and smooth. Drizzle the melted chocolate over the bars, then gently press the almonds into the surface, if using. Allow the chocolate to set before cutting. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week.

Nutrition information per serving: 120 calories; 60 calories from fat (50 per cent of total calories); 7 g fat (6 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 0 mg cholesterol; 14 g carbohydrate; 1 g fiber; 11 g sugar; 2 g protein; 75 mg sodium.


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